Wednesday, December 20 2017 12:15 EET
Ukraine
Russia took its officers from JCCC "right before" shelling in Donbas, continues to deny its own role - Volker
Russia, officers, JCCC, shelling, Donbas, Volker, Atlantic Council,  eastern Ukraine, U.S. Special Representative,

U.S. Special Representative for Ukraine Negotiations Kurt Volker noted on Twitter that Russia had recalled its representatives from the Joint Control and Coordination Centre (JCCC) right before a massive escalation in Donbas.

“Russia withdrew its officers from JCCC - a ceasefire implementation tool - right before a massive escalation in ceasefire violations. Ukraine just suffered some of the worst fighting since February, 2017,” Volker tweeted. “Decision for peace lies with Russia,” the tweet reads.

Speaking at the Atlantic Council conference “Making Peace in Donbas? The Role of a Peacekeeping Mission” Volker noted that this year saw the highest level of violence in eastern Ukraine since the conflict in Donbas erupted.

“2017 has been the most violent year of the conflict since it began,” Kurt Volker said, addressing the conference. He added that “last night was one of the most violent nights in eastern Ukraine” this year starting February.“Russia is continuing to deny its own role in this. And this is why this has been so difficult to resolve from the beginning. Russia has insisted that it has nothing to do with the forces that it has created, that it commands, that it controls; with the separatist governments that it has set up, that it changes the leaders out of at will as they did in Luhansk just last month,” he said.

Earlier reported that Russian proxies had shelled Novoluhanske on the eve of the St. Nickolas Day which resulted in casualties among civilians. 

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